Local Assembly Member for Monmouth, Nick Ramsay, yesterday questions the Welsh Government’s Minister for Rural Affairs, Lesley Griffiths AM on current policies for supporting farmers.
During the exchange Mr Ramsay asked the Minister for an update on the “Sustainable Farming and Our Land “ consultation.
Nick said: “ I have had extensive discussions with the NFU and FUW over the summer at the agricultural shows around Wales. The farmers I saw have welcomed some of the changes that have been taken on board by the Welsh Government. . I think the term 'land managers' rather than 'farmers' is being used more now in the document, which I know is to their liking, and says more about how they're dealing with their particular land management issues. Are you planning any other significant changes? And if you could just give us a general idea of where we are with that consultation and if there's anything else you would like to see from the farming community in Wales in terms of positive suggestions for this consultation, so we can get the best policy in the long run that we can all unite behind.”
Lesley Griffiths AM replied: “Certainly, in my discussions over the summer at the Royal Welsh Show and other agricultural shows I attended, it was very clear that the farming unions, in particular, and individual farmers, had welcomed the change in tone perhaps from 'Brexit and our land' to 'Sustainable Farming and our Land'. It is out to consultation—we have until 30 October—so, I'm very grateful to have the opportunity to remind everyone to please bring forward your responses to that consultation. I understand, the last time I asked, which was probably about three days ago, we'd had over 2,000 responses to date. Last year, we had 12,000, so you can see I would really like to get around that number again—particularly individual responses; I'm very interested in people's specific views. So, it's too early, obviously, to say what I expect to come out of that consultation, but what I do want to reiterate is it's a meaningful consultation and I really do want to hear from everybody. “